Idris Yusoh: Malaysian Higher Ed is World Class

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QS Asia, Singapore — Education Minister of Malaysia Idris Yusoh will deliver a keynote address at the upcoming QS-APPLE Conference & Exhibition in Putrajaya, Malaysia (for details, see:

During a public debate last year, the minister was challenged to prove his claim that Malaysian higher education is indeed “World Class”, and in response to this he contributed an article to a local news website.

We present some highlights from the article, which provide insight into this distinguished QS-APPLE keynote speaker and the education system of Malaysia.

“International students know that they can get quality education in Malaysia, and many nations send their best students here, fully-sponsored by their respective governments, in recognition of this.”

“Part of the appeal is that Malaysia is host to nine international branch campuses of renowned international universities … which are ranked within the top 100 in the world.”

“(25 percent) of all international students are pursuing programmes at postgraduate level in Malaysia, be it Masters or PhD. A majority of them are in our public universities.”

(On the quality of foreign academics working in Malaysia):

“The same goes to some of our foreign academics. Many of them who used to serve in our universities are now holding important positions in their home countries, as high as the prime minister (of Turkey).”

(On the benefits of hosting international students):

“There are economic benefits, knowledge accumulation, as well as social benefits to be gained when international students opt for a country to study in, and Malaysia is privileged to be host to so many.”

“Whilst rankings are useful indicators, they are not the only exhaustive and definitive indicator. We always have to be mindful as there are many ranking bodies, each vying to be conclusive and authoritative.”

“We conducted research into scholarly output on Islamic Banking. We discovered that out of 422 publications on Islamic banking between 2009 and 2014, 178 or 41 percent of all publications originated from Malaysia.”

“Recently, IIUM law student Ameera Natasha Moore was crowned as the best debater at the Cambridge Women’s Inter-varsity debating tournament, outranking debaters from Cambridge, Oxford and other renowned institutions.”

“Without a doubt, improving graduate employability, English proficiency, and critical thinking skills are among the priorities of the Education Ministry.”

“Every Malaysian plays a role – lecturers, students, parents, private sector and members of the public. Together, we’ll make our education system even better.”